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Saúde e Sociedade

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MENDONCA, Raimunda das Chagas; GIATTI, Leandro Luiz  and  TOLEDO, Renata Ferraz de. The environmental theme in representations and practices of family health professionals in the municipality of Manaus - state of Amazonas /Brazil. Saude soc. [online]. 2012, vol.21, n.3, pp.776-787. ISSN 0104-1290.

There are abundant scientific evidences showing that the increased risk of exposure to diseases is a consequence of anthropogenic environmental changes. In the Family Health Strategy, tasks with a clear environmental focus are prescribed, indicating to the professional teams that they should consider these aspects in their health practices. The objective of this research was to study representations and practices of Family Health Professionals of Manaus - State of Amazonas, Northern Brazil - about environmental issues and their interface with public health. Data were collected by means of participant observation and semi-structured interviews, and the qualitative analysis was carried out through Content Analysis and Methodological Triangulation. The results showed that most professionals do not understand the environment in a systemic way, even though they recognize the great impact that environmental factors have on human health; as interventions, the educational practices follow traditional methodologies and focus on blaming the individual and on the simple transmission of knowledge; the professionals' relationship with the community is limited to personal and/or collective care. It is concluded that in order to the Family Health Strategy to contribute to restructure the system, it is essential to redirect this new health policy model so that it becomes effective as a social and environmental practice.

Keywords : Environmental Health; Family Health; Health Personnel; Health Promotion.

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